Why Barefoot??

Because being barefoot to me is being raw. Feeling every sharp rock, lush clover, spiky thistle, cushioned blade of grass, slimy covered stones, fragrant feathered flowers, cereal of sand, bead of water, element of litter, and the mash of mud.

Being Barefoot is the promise of prancing in the moonlight, leaping in the waves, running through a meadow, dancing on the porch, and doing all this while enduring a long journey to the end.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Pantry's into doorways

I had a hard week. The journalling went really well until Friday then it fell apart. But I did have a few victories, I would like to celebrate with you.

To the left is a picture of my pantry. I call it my carb closet, because there is nothing in there but carbs. I found myself standing in front of this closet a lot this week. Looking, searching, seeking after ......something......... The victory I had this week with closet is that I found myself standing there and taking a moment to say to myself "There is nothing in there, but what do you need?" I was able to realize what I needed to do, which was in this case write out a minute by minute schedule for a retreat that I was in charge of Friday. The effect was immediate, the relief of realizing what was really bothering me instead of trying to numb it with food. It was still hard to accomplish the task but I felt better about myself having done the task at hard rather than eat it away. So all of a sudden my pantry which had been
feeding me for years was actually helping, and teaching me. I now look at the pantry more like a doorway to what I really need. See the light in the back of the pantry that is how I look at it now. I just have to look beyond the boxes of food to see what I really need. After realizing this I found there were other doorways in my kitchen.

My freezer I really should start counting how often I open and close this in a day. It is another doorway. "Why are you standing here? Are you hot so you need to put your head in here? Are you really hungry? What do you need?"

The fridge there is nothing in here that I physically need. But teach me what I really need.

And my last doorway, the cupboard. I am putting these up here so I can remember to STOP and question myself. "What do I really need?"

As I get better at this the answers vary.
I need a break.
I need a friend.
I need to cry.
I need to breathe.
I need to make that phone call.
I need to write that on the calendar.
And even, I need to write that blog.

Monday, September 19, 2011

As per requested.....

Sorry to the rest of you, but I have had a request to post a picture of my post marathon toes. The second toenail on the left has now completely gone. So post marathon life has been HARD, big surprise as pre marathon life was HARD.
I am really struggling to find new routines, since the sun does not rise until 6:30 am and my children get on the bus at 7:20 am it doesn't leave a lot of outside morning time. And my 3 and 5 year olds are way to heavy to push in a stroller plus I really don't like running on the highway with my kids in a stroller, avoiding cars myself is one thing but with a stroller is just too scary for me. I have gone back to Kettlebells, but I still want more. So I have decided to start P90X again, and then do swings and snatches at night with Jesse. I want to break through plateau again and lose some more weight.

On Saturday I went running with some friends, and we ending up joining with a Terry Fox Run. We ran about 7km it felt great to run again, but my friends are a lot faster than I am and so my lungs really hurt for a while but I walked to try and calm them down, and then ran at my own pace. This is one thing I love about running, it is so individual. I have to admit it hurt my pride a little that I couldn't keep up after all I did just run a marathon, but then I thought maybe some one will see how slow I run and say "Hey didn't she just run a marathon?" " Maybe I could run one too." In fact the race that we joined was part of a all night run to raise money, and I think that one of the kids did end up running 43KM which is more than a marathon.

That brings me to Terry Fox. I love Terry Fox. Terry Fox makes me proud to be Canadian. He is one of our National Hero's. For a really good video of this incredible man click here. Really short version, he had cancer in his leg which had to be removed. He decided to raise money for cancer research by running across Canada, he ran 26 miles everyday he called the "Marathon of Hope." He ran every day until the cancer struck again, this time in his lungs. He passed away soon after. Now that I have run 26.2 miles this feat means even more to me. For another great Terry Fox story check out one of my dear friends blogs here.

I went to visit Linda last week she had me fill out a page that said "Write down 5 reasons you want to lose weight." This was harder for me than I would have thought. But this is what I came up with.
1. I want to wear size 10-12 pants.
2. I want to see how to live at 155 pounds. (How much do I eat? How much do I exercise? What do I eat?)
3. I want an BMI between 19-24.
4. I want to know what weighing 155 pounds feels like.
5. I would like to remain healthy for the rest of my life.

I feel like these are WEAK. I can at least understand why it has been so hard for me to commit to losing more weight.
These are all things that I want but do I REALLY want them?
Am I really ready to put in all this hard work in order to get them?
Right now I am say "yes, I think so."
Which is silly, it needs to be a


I can and will create my own reality. I can and I will do this for my self. So just like the training for the marathon, through consistency, and commitment I CAN, I WILL, I AM.
I will journal everything that goes in my mouth.
I can exercise six days a week.
I am going to be 155 pounds.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Here we go...

The race started late, there was a mix up with the buses or something. I was so glad that David and I had got there early because the amount of stressed that would have caused me.... yikes don't want to think about it.

I was at the back of the pack and there wasn't any gun or count down or anything we just starting moving forward. The sun was rising a little by now but not a lot. It is a weird feeling, the bouncing of about 500 people together as we get funnelled through the starting gate. I keep breathing and saying to myself, "It is just another long run it is just another long run, keep focused on the moment, enjoy yourself, breathe it in, stay in the moment."

I meet two other women who seem a little scared, we chat for a moment it is their first marathon too, they say, "It seemed like a really good idea in January." I wonder why, why are they really running a marathon? I question myself "Why are you really running a marathon?" But the flashback to CBC sports when I was a little girl watching the runners, and crying. I knew then I wanted (needed?) to do that. So I know why, because there has always been a marathon in me needing to get out. Today I release my marathon.

David stays with me for the first mile, we don't talk very much, my teeth are cold from the HUGE smile on my face. I am so happy to be here, there is no hesitation, no what if's, no knots in the stomach, I am running and I love to run. There is so much chatter going on around us, it makes me feel very calm I love that I don't have to talk, but that I can listen. The scenery is beautiful, and a lot like home, thick brush, and trees, with a stream rolling along. I think for the first time ever that maybe I could live in Idaho. I am trying to go slow, because that is what the plan is go slow at the start not to go out too fast. I do this by breathing easy, and keeping pace with my breath.

At mile two David gives me a quick hug and goes. I am not sad to see him go. I am only peaceful, it is crazy to me how much I am enjoying this. I am wearing a long sleeve t shirt that I remember buying when I weighed 285 pounds, it was a little tight then and I bought it so I could wear it underneath another shirt. It is very baggy now I brought it along so I could dis card it on mile three after I warmed up a little. I am freezing while running, it helps keep me mindful, but even my toes are cold. I keep telling myself to enjoy it because I will be ending in the sun. I dedicate this mile to my Heavenly Father, I spend most of the mile telling him how grateful I am for all the blessings in my life.

Close to mile three is the first water station, they are all in PJ's. I stop and use the potty, and drink G (Gatorade). I also decide to keep my shirt until the next station at mile 5. It is still really cold.

Miles 4-5 come and go at mile five I use the potty again, I am so nervous about having to use the ditch with everybody running by, that I just keep using the potties whenever they show up. I eat oranges and bananas. I really do ditch the shirt at this station they tell me it will be at the finish line, I tell them I don't need it anymore. As I run away from my "big, baggy, overweight, shirt" I feel vulnerable, the cold is still there, but it is also very freeing to have it off. I say goodbye to it for better or for worse, it is gone and I won't be picking it up again. These miles are dedicated to Linda, and all my peers in the lifestyles program. I wouldn't be doing this without them. I think about them, pray for them, thank my Heavenly Father for them.

I hit some sun at mile six the tune "Here comes the sun do do do Here comes the sun do do do do and its alright." I put on my sunglasses rub my arms and smile into the first rays of sun. I love it. I pass a cabin about two hundred feet off the road with a man standing on the porch. I wave he rings a bell. It makes me smile even bigger. I chat with a group of ladies behind me they are from Utah. I overhear that the older gentleman in front of me is running his 181st marathon and He is 74, but didn't start running until he was 65. He is also the vice president of the 50 marathons 50 states club, who is having a convention in conjunction with this marathon.

Mile 7 is a little switch back we run up a hill and then back down it. David is waiting at the start of it he has already run it. He gives me a another hug and high five, tells me I look like I doing great and is gone again. I won't see him for the rest of the race. He finishes 40 minutes faster than I do, I am so proud of him. Running up hill feels great since most of it has been down hill so far, running up hills always makes me feel strong. There is a huge head wind I am once again freezing!! But it disappears at the turn around. There is a herd of sheep in the field I love them. I realize that as I am running back down the hill that there is only one or two people behind me. This is an odd thought.

I am still trying to decide how I feel about this at mile eight, where I use the potty again. When I get out of the out house they are packing up the station. I am in last place. I drink some G. Take some deep breathes and do some mental exercises about calming down. I deal with it. Ok so if I end up in last place well what if? Am I going to stop? Am I going to give up?

NO, NEVER, NO NEVER. My chant runs through me head.
I am a marathoner. Running makes me powerful and I love it. I run four days a week. I never miss a training run. I NEVER quit on a run. I am healthy. I am strong. I love my body. I am prepared to finish. I am a marathoner, and Heavenly Father is helping me succeed.

I decide to go for it. I have previously decided to think of the marathon in two ways. Run the last six miles first so when I got to mile six I only had 20 miles left. Guess what I have run 20 miles before so I know I can run 20 miles again. Also I had decided to cut the race up into three eight mile segments. It is eight miles from my home to Cardston. So all I was really doing was running from my home to town three times. Easy right. Done it a tonne of times before. I know all of the mile markers in my head. 1st mile is to the pavement, 2nd to the church, and so on. So as I leave mile 8 I decide ok enough with the slowness let's go, I am already last so if I really do end up last well then I haven't lost anything.

It feels so good to run a faster down hill it seems easy, I pass some people, including the Utah ladies say wow as I pass them. I keep up the pace until mile 10 in which I walk for a little while. At mile ten I get really excited because I am almost at the 1/2 way mark. Plus only 16 miles to go, I try to calculate how many times I have run 16 miles but it just makes me more tired. I take some gel, I am so nervous about trying to eat this stuff. But I do it. I am almost more proud of me keeping that gel down then finishing the marathon. It tasted like a mouthful of warm bumble berry jam. AHHH it was really bad. I don't need to use the potty anymore my body has finally adjusted.

I have to admit the next 3 miles seem to crawl by, mostly because I really want to be at the 1/2 way mark. I do see a dog that is an older version of Mac, and I talk to him for a while. The homes are beautiful. Every turn I am waiting to see if I recognize anything. My calf muscle start to cramp and hurt it stays that way the rest of the race.

I finally reach half way I am so excited I relive everything from last year. Being with Rita and Brent at the start, the way that race felt compared to what I feel now. I am completely rejuvenated, and I think oh I am running with Rita now, but I have to stop thinking that way because it makes me start to cry. It seems weird to me how familiar the course is. I remember a lot of it. I see way more relaxed. I run into the two girls, from the start of the race who are running their first marathon too. We chat, about nothing, one of the girls is going to be on Home and Garden TV the next day even though they filmed it in April. I run into the 74 year old man who tells me I am doing great for my first and that I will finish just fine. I am so thankful for this because I am assuming that if He is running his 181 marathon he knows what he is talking about.

During miles 13-19 I run with an older gentlemen and his son or maybe grandson. It is the son's first marathon too. They are excited that I am from Canada. There is a group of three older gentlemen chatting it up they are so cute and make me smile, they are dressed in long socks and short shorts, hats, and sun screen on their noses. Some miles seem long some seem to be really short. I am starting to run/walk now. It is very familiar to me because this is how I started running. "Ok Barb, you can run to that mailbox, that driveway, that big rock, the water station."

Mile 19 and my Calvary arrives.
Brent my brother in law. He had run the 5k and placed 1st in his age group and 5th overall, and then turned around and ran back up the race route to come and find David and I. I was extremely excited to see him. I first asked how David was doing he said he was a mile or two in front of me and doing ok. Brent then explained that he had brought a water bottle with him and filled it with G. and he would hold it but I could use it when ever I wanted. He also explained that I didn't have to comment back to him if I didn't feel like it. I filled him in on all the runners stories around us. So we run, we walk, we run we walk. I am pretty sure that Brent is a computer programmer, in fact I am quite disgusted with myself for not really knowing what he does, but I know he is ridiculously smart and works with computers. Anyway I hope you can understand that he is not that chatty of a guy. My darling brother in law talked for 7.2 miles to me without so much as a "that's cool" response. I have often heard people say the last six miles of the marathon is really the last half of a marathon. I am sure that 7.2 miles for Brent seemed like a whole marathon. But it was a beautiful thing He talked I ran when I could and walked when I needed to. I felt no pressure whatsoever, I drank when I felt like it or when he suggested it. I even managed another gel package. I think at mile 22 or so.

The rest of the race feels hazy in my head. There was a hill that I ran 1/2 up. We run by a high school where I can hear the cheer leaders cheering for the team I pretend it is for me. One of the volunteers mentions that she could see my smile from a long ways away it makes me feel good, and also makes me wonder, I am smiling wow I don't think I knew that. There is the misting machines which I really love because for some reason they make me feel like I am a real athlete.

I get a little emotional a mile 24, wholly cow I am totally going to do this. I am kind of passing a lot of people and totally cheering them on. I pass one guy and say to him "Your doing great!" He swings his head toward me and says "uhh not as great as you." I later find out that he is a councillor in my sister's bishopric.

Mile 25, I am there. I am so there. One point 2 miles left. I actually start getting a little nervous. I don't know why, my legs hurt, and so does my left forearm(who knows why) I am tired but not like "ok I am done tired" just tired.

Mile 26 I get really excited really really excited. Brent and I talk about how we are going to approach the finish.
One block I tried to run but have to walk once more until I see the finish line.
Then I sprint to the finish, high fives to my kids and nieces and nephews who all kind of run with me to the end.
I try to hold the emotions in until I get through the line, at Brent's suggestion. I am running full tilt.

And then a slow motion moment.

I pass my Dad....He is standing there with a camera, I lock eyes with him, he winks at me, he pumps his fist into the air, and says "Good Job Barbie." It feels like he whispers it only to me. It is one of the most personal moments with him that I have ever had.

Then I am back to finish I feel like a machine, up down with the legs and the arms.

I cross the line, and immediately start crying harder than I have done in quite some time. It is a totally ugly cry, sobbing to be more accurate. I think I raised my hands over my head and said "I did it!"

I am so glad it is over, 16 weeks of my life, for a moment of pure joy.

And it is a moment.

AHHH but the moment is not over, I look up to see...
my friend Dawn who has driven 9 hours, and hung out with my family for 3 hours, to see me cross the finish line. I L-O-V-E- this picture it was totally worth the drive, thanks Dawn.

I continue crying and hugging everything and one in the place. I tell my fellow running comrades good job. And that's it.

I have decided that I actually learned more and got more out of the training for the marathon than the marathon itself. Well I did have a good time running the race it somehow felt like I had already finished it when I started it.

But the feeling I get when I whisper to myself "I am a marathoner" is worth every footstep.

Saturday, September 10, 2011


September 2011 September 2010

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

8000 words

I was remarkably happy and relived when the alarm went off at 4:15 am. "Oh Thank heavens, lets end this sleepless night and get on with it."

My chauffeur, poor Dad always driving me to early morning seminary, basketball practices, and now drop off for marathons. He was darling and great and so supportive. I love my Dad.

I was so happy to have David with me for the bus ride and all the start stuff. I find this the hardest part to be alone for a marathon I don't mind once we start but being alone at the start is a little hard.

So funny we got dropped off in pitch dark and where told to walk this way, a happy throng for the most part but no signs or lights saying where to go it was a little spooky. We ended up at a barn, with the goats hanging around, some people went in the barn to stay warm. It felt a little like home.

Keep drinking.....

And as always line ups before the race.

This is the "Start" line, I really can't explain how dark it was.

It is crazy to me that I started at this and ended at this.

I just wanted to post something, I will tell you more of this journey later. Thanks for all your support and prayers, I felt them.